Category Archives: Sports

Wellington High School released summer weights and condition program

Sumner Newscow report — The following is an outline of the Summer Weights and Condition program by Wellington Activities Director Luke Smith.

We will start PSQ when we are in Phase 3 of the reopening plan, which right now is scheduled for June 15. For the first two weeks, we will only have high school students coming to PSQ

Phase 3: June 15- 26: High School only

1) Adhere to social distancing guidelines established by the Governor and Sumner Co. Health Department. (PHASE 3)

a) Mass Gatherings of no more than 90 individuals are allowed. We will limit 30 people max in each location: (weight room, main gym, aux gym) or conduct conditioning outside to help maintain social distancing

b) Maintain 6 ft. of social distancing with only infrequent or incidental moments of closer proximity.

2) Adhere to KSHSAA Guidelines:

2020 Wellington track and field team had 65 athletes, and 9 returning state qualifiers… but no season

Gavin York would have returned as a junior as a two-time returning state qualifier.

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — For the past three weeks, Newscow has been doing stories on “what might have been” on Wellington spring sports teams. The last story is about track and field – perhaps the “granddaddy of them all” when it comes to spring sports.

“Boy, this is a little hard to think about,” said Zane Aguilar, Wellington head track coach about what could have transpired in 2020. “Because with track you just never know. It isn’t like with football or basketball where you somewhat have an idea what a team will do. With track, there are so many variables.”

Eric Kop in hurdles in 2019.

For instance, in 2019, Wellington’s Eric Kop became the first male athlete in years to win the school a Class 4A state championship. He placed first in 110-meter hurdles with a 14.55 time and came in second in the 300.

“He came out of nowhere,” Aguilar said. “We knew he had a chance of being pretty good at the beginning of the season. But I had no idea he was going to win a state championship.”

So we will just speculate, which is essentially what we have been doing anyway with 2020 spring sports since we are in the middle of a pandemic.

The Wellington boys tennis team had everybody back for what looked like to be a very good season

In 2019, Wellington won the regional tournament as was looking forward to good things in 2020.

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — The Wellington boys tennis team were regional champions in 2019. And everybody was returning. Suffice it to say, Wellington had high hopes for 2020.

“It would have been an exciting season,” said Chad Whaley, Wellington boys tennis coach and new father of a baby boy this week. “We would have had everybody back. I really thought we could have had all six players (two doubles and two singles) in the state tournament.”

It isn’t a reach to say this. Wellington had two singles players and a doubles team reach the state tournament in 2019. A Class 4A Regional usually has six teams with six singles and six doubles teams qualifying for state.

Wellington would win the regional in Winfield by one point in 2019. Hunter Bryant and Tyler Brown both qualified in singles and John Long and Kade Adams were doubles state qualifiers.

Austin Soles signs with Southwestern College to play basketball

Austin Soles signs with Southwestern College. (Courtesy photo by Steve Sturgis) (Click to enlarge).

Sumner Newscow report — Austin Soles, (front, center) has signed a letter of intent to play basketball at Southwestern College. Soles is a Wellington High School senior and has started the past two seasons for the Crusaders. He is pictured with his parents, Traci and Billy Soles. Others in the photo include Wellington High School basketball coaches (back row, from left) Rick Roitman, Joe Newman and Matt Metcalf. 

In 2020, Wellington’s softball team wouldn’t have beaten Andale, but they might have been pretty good

Rylee Rusk was set to pitch again for the Crusaders in 2020.

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — The  2020 Wellington High School girls softball team would have been an interesting team to watch in 2020. There would have been a few returning starters mixed in with an influx of new talent.

Wellington head coach T.D. Buck said it was quite possible the Crusaders could have defeated every other team on their schedule with the exception of Augusta and Andale. In 2019, Augusta defeated Andale 5-2 to win the Class 4A state championship.

“It would have depended on our pitching,” Buck said concerning Wellington’s success. “In softball, there are three things you need to win: pitching, hitting and great defense. I would say great pitching is the most important because you can effectively shut down your opponent.”

Wellington had two starting pitchers in 2019: Brooke McCorkle and Rylee Rusk. McCorkle graduated and is now attending Mississippi Valley State where she pitches and plays first base.

The 2020 Wellington High School boys golf team may have been something special

Editor’s note: We are starting a series called ‘What might have been’ – stories of Wellington High School spring sports teams that obviously didn’t get to play their season due to the pandemic. But nevertheless, the teams are worthy of a little recognition and maybe some harmless speculation of how the year may have unfolded. We will start with the Wellington High School boys golf team.


Wellington boys golf team places 2nd in Dodge City (courtesy photo) (Click on photo for larger version).

By Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — Sometimes a high school sports program is a perpetual struggler. Sometimes a program is a dynasty. Most likely programs fall somewhere in between.

But for the WHS boys golf program throughout the 23 years, there has been a bit of a cloud hovering above — that same cloud that hovered over teams like the Kansas City Chiefs or the Chicago Cubs for years.

Not since 1983, Wellington has won a state championship in boys golf. It seems like incredible bad luck because there have been some very, very good golf teams to go through WHS. Yet, something unconventionally wacky would happen in the 18-hole state tournament to prevent the Crusaders from winning a state championship trophy.

The ‘every-post-season-list-that-has-Sumner-County-players’ list

Eli Wiseman of Belle Plaine was the lone male Sumner County basketball player to be named a first-team all-state player. A junior, Wiseman helped Belle Plaine to a 17-5 record. 

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — Remember the good old days when we had sports? The 2019-20 high school basketball season was a good one even though it ended in the quarterfinals of the state tournament due to the Coronavirus Pandemic.

Here is a collection of the all-state and all-league honors that Sumner County athletes have accumulated during the postseason.

Kansas Basketball Coaches Association All-State team


Class 4A, honorable mention: Ali Zeka, Wellington, so.

Class 2A second team: Kara Koester, Conway Springs, sr.


Class 2A first-team: Eli Wiseman, Belle Plaine, jr.

Class 2A, honorable mention: Austin Hilton, Belle Plaine, jr.

Topeka Capital-Journal

Wellington High School and Middle School holding virtual tryouts for 2020-21 cheerleading team

Sumner Newscow report — Wellington High School and Wellington Middle School will be having virtual tryouts for the 2020-21 cheerleading team. This is for all students interested in grades 6-11 right now.

In order to tryout please click here.

Subsequently… KSHSAA has canceled the spring season

Sumner Newscow report — The following is a press release by the Kansas State High School Activities Association:


“The KSHSAA is committed to the safety of our student-participants and the health of our school communities. Accordingly, in response to Governor Kelly’s Executive Order regarding the closure and cessation of in-person instruction in all Kansas schools through May 29, 2020, the KSHSAA is canceling all spring championships, competitions, and festivals for the remainder of this school year.

The KSHSAA recognizes the value of school activities for all students and school communities, but the current situation does not permit the opportunity for school activities to take place in a manner that is consistent with the very reason school activities exist.

Belle Plaine’s Austin Hilton is named Big Cheese Athlete of the Week

Austin Hilton (left) is Big Cheese Athlete of the Week

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow —  For the final Big Cheese Athlete of the Week of the winter season, we are awarding it to Austin Hilton, a Belle Plaine junior shooting guard.

Hilton, a 6-2 junior, scored 14 points despite being the recipient of a box-and-1 defense in a 76-61 loss to Garden Plain in the sub-state semifinals in Sedan on Friday. Earlier in the week, he helped Belle Plaine to an easy 70-37 win over Leon-Bluestem in the first round.

For the season, Hilton averaged 20 points, six rebounds and two assists a game helping lead the Dragons to a 17-5 record – the best for a team in Sumner County this season.

For his efforts, Hilton is a recipient of a large delicious Big Cheese Pizza at 324 N. Washington. 

Hain, LeGrand win powerlifting 4A state championship; both Wellington girls and boys place in top 5

Kaitlyn Hain and Elise LeGrand win individual state powerlifting championships.

Sumner Newscow report — Wellington participated in the Class 4A State Powerlifting Tournament at Kansas Piper High School over the weekend. Wellington had two individual state champions: Kaitlyn Hain and Elie LeGrand.

Hain finished first overall in the 148-pound division. LeGrand placed first in the 165-pound division.

As a team Wellington placed fourth for the girls while the boys placed fifth. The team and individual results are as follows:

Belle Plaine boys fall in sub-state semifinals

Sumner Newscow report — The Belle Plaine Dragons season has come to an end.

Belle Plaine boys lost to Garden Plain 76-61 in the sub-state semifinals in Sedan. Garden Plain will battle Wichita Independent for the sub-state championship tonight. The Dragons end their season at 17-5.

“Got to hand it to Garden Plain,” said Lonnie Lollar, Belle Plaine head boys basketball coach. “They had four seniors, who were bigger than us. They found a way to win.”

Garden Plain used a box-and-one on Austin Hilton, Belle Plaine’s leading scorer throughout the game.  As a result, much of the offensive output fell in the hands of shooting guards Eli Wiseman and Tim Bible. 

Wellington boys finish season at Buhler with 61-33 sub-state loss

Berkeley Wright shooting for Wellington vs. Buhler in the sub-state first round.

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — The Wellington boys basketball team had little answers for Buhler’s size and depth and ended up getting eliminated quickly in the sub-state tournament.

Host Buhler beat Wellington 61-33 to advance to the second round. Wellington finished the year at 6-15.

” I felt that we defended them well throughout the course of the game,” said Joe Newman, Wellington head boys basketball coach. “But we could never get going offensively. No matter how well you defend, if you can’t put the ball in the basket it can make for a rough night.”

Wellington girls are quickly eliminated from sub-state losing to Buhler 69-32

Kami Reichenberger vs. Buhler in sub-state first-round game.

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — The Wellington girls basketball season came to a screeching halt Tuesday in Buhler.

The northern Crusaders manhandled their fellow Crusaders to the south 69-32.

Wellington finished the season at 11-10.

“It was a beat down,” said Eric Adams, Wellington head girls basketball coach. “Buhler was a senior-laden team that came ready to play.”

It was almost shocking how dominating Buhler was considering Wellington had lost to the same team by a mere four points, 49-45, on its home court in January. Considering that Wellington went on a five-game winning streak thereafter and nearly beat Andale on Thursday, there was great optimism going into the game for Wellington fans.

Fehrman, Cantrell, Wright, Young named Big Cheese Athletes of the Week

Kenny Fehrman – 220 pounds.

Brennan Cantrell – 113 pounds.

Hagen Wright  – 285 pounds.

Kanden Young – 195 pounds.

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — The four Wellington state qualifiers at the Class 4A Wrestling Championships in Salina are receiving the Big Cheese Athletes of the Week.

Kanden Young, Kenny Fehrman, Brennan Cantrell, and Hagen Wright helped Wellington to a 16th place finish Friday and Saturday. As mentioned before Fehrman and Young both finished third place in the 195 and 220-pound divisions respectively. Wright went 1-2 in the 285-pound division and Cantrall participated in the 113-pound division going 0-2.

For their efforts, all four boys are each recipients of a free large delicious pizza at Big Cheese Pizza at 324 N. Washington.


Conway Springs, Belle Plaine girls get eliminated from post season

Sumner Newcow report — Two Sumner County girls teams were quickly knocked out of the Sedan sub-state tournament. Wichita Independent ended the Belle Plaine girls season with a 43-36 victory. Conway Springs lost a heartbreaker in Sedan 54-53.

Wichita Independent 43 Belle Plaine 36

Wichita Independent used a 12-3 first-quarter output and would never relinquish the lead thereafter. It was 24-13 at the half. In the third Indy expanded the lead to 34-18 before Belle Plaine narrowed the margin to seven at the end.

Taylor Bohannon, who ended her senior year as a Dragon, led all scorers with 20 points. She recently signed to play basketball at McPherson College. Other scorers included: Cheyenne Cooper 9, Alaya Mowdy 3, Mallory Reynolds 2, Airalyn Frame 1, Alyssa Hunter 1. 

Wellington 7th Grade boys basketball team wins Patriot League Championship

The Wellington seventh grade boys basketball team are Patriot League Champs. (Click to enlarge) 

Sumner Newscow report — The Wellington seventh grade boys completed a perfect season by winning the Patriot League Tournament Championship, Monday evening at the Mulvane Middle School. Wellington defeated Prairie Hills in the championship game, 50-19. Earlier in the week, Wellington defeated Clearwater 43-24 in the semifinals.

The seventh grade ended the year at 15-0. No game was even close. The stats of both tournament games are as follows:

Saturday (semifinals)

Wellington 43 Clearwater 24

Brody Weir 11
Dusty Bannister 10
Carter Burnett 9
Nick Giefer 8
Jagger Norris 4
Skyler Branam 1

Monday (Championship game)

Monday night post-season scoreboard…


Patriot League Championship:

7th Boys – Wellington 50 Prairie Hills 19

Class 2A sub-state:

Girls – First Round.

Sedan 54 Conway Springs 53
West Elk 55 Cedar Vale-Dexter 21
Wichita Independent 43 Belle Plaine 36
Garden Plain 49 Leon Bluestem 18.

Boys First Round (tonight)

#7 Leon Bluestem at #2 Belle Plaine, 7 p.m.
#6 Conway Springs at #3 Garden Plain, 7 p.m.
#5 West Elk at #4 Sedan, 7 p.m.
#8 Wichita Independent at #1 Dexter-Cedar Vale (at Dexter), 7 p.m.

Class 4A sub-state:

5 Sporting Things: Wrapping up wrestling and previewing the basketball sub-state tournaments ahead

Anna Cullens (left) finished second at the state wrestling meet. She was defeated by All-American Alexis Allen of Independence. 

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow – Five sporting things happening across Sumner County…

1. Girls wrestling wrap-up

While we are about to embark on “March Madness,” the Wellington wrestling program just finished up “February Madness.” For Wellington head wrestling coach Mitch McComb’s program it was a banner year.

He had his highest state placer since taking over when Anna Cullens finished second at 109 pounds. She gave All-American Alexis Allen of Independence quite a scare before succumbing to a pin in the third round.

McComb said the future is bright for Wellington girls wrestling. With the girls, he has now, if he could get a couple back from previous years, and the potential of two eighth graders, Wellington could vie for a state trophy next season.

Cullens finish 2nd, Young and Fehrman 3rd at 3-day state wrestling tournament

Anna Cullens (on top) becomes the first Wellington state finalist since 2008. Above, Kanden Young celebrates his third-place victory.

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — After three days of state wrestling, Wellington came home with three finalists in one of its most successful outings in years.

Anna Cullens, a 109 pounder from Wellington, finished state runner-up after losing to undefeated all-American Alexis Allen of Independence in the championship finals of the Kansas Girls Inaugural State Wrestling Tournament on Thursday. She became Wellington’s first state finalist since Kody Page won the state championship at 215 pounds in 2008.

Two days later, both Kanden Young and Kenny Fehrman finished second third in the 195 and 220-pound weight divisions.

Overall, Wellington finished 17th in the all-class girls’ field, and 16th in Class 4A for the boys.

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